Celebrate. Pop the cork! Our technology is “out there.”
Now…what technology did we put inside the spacecraft? Only the highest. Especially the “identifier” aboard. We sent out an LP!
We're hoping the probe would someday be discovered/captured/otherwise-examined by extraterrestrials.
I tried to make out details on the label - wouldn't it be ironic if it were Sony or Polygram? Oops. Back to the topic at hand.
There are greetings from Earth in over fifty languages and messages from then President Jimmy Carter and U.N. Secretary General Kurt Waldheim.
Interestingly, the record is recorded/encoded at 16 2/3 RPM (the 1970’s version of data compression.) There was compression – likely by reducing modulation to add additional groove space – to make room for 90 minutes of music and the 115 images
Smartly figuring that the finders of the record might not have a Shure or Benz Micro dealership nearby, the record was sent with cartridge and stylus. Further, written and symbolic instructions were included in the hopes that these extraterrestrials will “figure it out.”
And what will they figure out? Well, think about it.
“Hey, Glop, look what someone launched into space.”
“Yeah. Can’t believe it. And, from the pictures, it looks like we have to spin this thing then scratch this pointy thing against it to find out what’s in it.”
“Right. And how long has it been since we had anything that spun? A million years?”
“True enough. I mean, holy creator, these guys are really primitive. Things have to move to make sounds or pictures.”
“Oh, the farquar with it. I don’t care, do you?”
“Only if that disc says they’re close by.”
How far have we come in 40 years? What would we send today? DVD? Laptop complete with hard drive full of “Earth”? (And what battery will we send with that?).